Artist Simon Rogers creates David Bowie Tribute

It’s always interesting to catch up with local artist Simon Rogers to see what he is up to in his Bastion Mews studio, which also consists of the walls and businesses around the mews.  Bastion Mews is home to several interesting businesses including, a locals’ favourite – The Shack Revolution, Temple Records and Hereford Cycle Hub.

Simon has begun to leave his mark on this community hub hidden away from the mainstream of Hereford foot traffic.  You will find Simon’s David Bowie tribute behind The Shack Revolution.

Hereford artist Simon Rogers, David Bowie tribute
Simon Rogers spreading ashes around his tribute to recently deceased legend David Bowie.

This piece of street art began as a skull and cross bones, then evolved into a David Bowie tribute after hearing the news of this heroe’s passing, moving Simon so much, he also performed an ash ceremony on the ground around it (view photograph).

Simon is also creator of Temple Records cosmic façade, as seen in this article.  His next project is Temple Records shop sign.  I have had a peak, and am excited to see the finished product.  I won’t spill the beans.

I can’t help but feel that since Hereford Council is choosing to pull out of it’s £130,000 support for The Courtyard, Hereford artists will forever remain obscure.  They should offer its citizens more then just cider farms and cows, industrial estates or a brand new shopping center lacking in any kind of architectural pride (they really need to do something about that…perhaps hire some of our fine artists to do murals)

It is home to many artists, writers, musicians and other creatives who choose to make this beautiful county their home, yet find themselves having to leave for greener pastures where there is an opportunity to create their way into a sustainable salary.

The speed of the Council’s inconsiderate axing and lack of vision is dizzying.  I can’t help but feel that the only way a creative in this county will make a living is by having succeeded elsewhere, only to return when their fortune is made.

The lack of hope for future generations is despairing.  This county is a middle-aged (like myself, yet so unlike myself),  and a cranky, classist senior citizen’s wet dream (yes I actually did just say that).  We can only hope that our local food and entertainment culture continues to be driven by young entrepeneurs who are not afraid to upset the boys at the club.  This is not an ageist point of view, just an honest observation.

chopper with custom box Hereford, England
Chopper with custom boom box arriving on the scene.

Regardless, this will be our first great summer in many years thanks to these business-minded, driven twenty somethings, bringing us a high standard of food, cocktails, and who thankfully are keen to support local musical acts, while allowing their walls to double as art galleries.

HUGE KUDOS to artists like Simon Rogers, who are loud and proud about their craft, and keep this way of life alive.

 

 

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Coffee Talk with Hi-Fi Guy of Temple Records

technics hereford, hifi audio in hereford, vinyl, reggae
Proudly showcasing Special Edition Reggae Vinyl. Left, Guy Davies. Right, Hard working assistant Imogen Kennedy.

 

If you are cruising along Bath Street, you will notice the entrance to Bastion Mews alongside our local African beauty’s shop Coco T.  Turn in there and your eyes will behold another enclosure the city has tucked away, which is home to various establishments, such as popular newcomer, The Shack Revolution.

temple records herefordYou immediately notice that alongside The Shack Revolution, stands another building with a cosmic facade that has ‘intergalactic appeal‘. Temple Records is a Hifi retailer that specializes in refurbished and customized Secondhand Hifi/Audio equipment to keep the party going all
night long.

Determined to solve the mystery that looms over the place like a layer of space dust, I decided to pop in and meet Guy Davies, owner of Temple Records, while carefully sipping a hot cappuccino perfectly brewed by an always gracious Shack Revolution staff member.

So Let’s Talk

HCC:  So you have a pretty impressive facade going on with your shop front.  What inspired the design?

GD:  I commissioned the Bastion Mews artist in residence, Simon Rogers, who I gave creative free reign while maintaining a street art and music culture theme.   My shopfront was safe in his hands.

HCC:  Impressive work Simon!  How long have you been here?  We all remember your previous location on Eign Strturntables hereford, technics, refurbished, seconhand, audio, hifieet.  This is definitely much cooler, yet it seems you would have less foot traffic and visibility.  How is that working out for you?

GD:  (Flashing a devious smile) Foot traffic isn’t an issue for Temple Records, I established this business in 2005 and have built up many loyal customers throughout the years.  I must point out that we work from this location as more of a Headquarters.  The majority of my trade happens on the website http://www.templeofbass.co.ukbut everyone is welcome to pop in, we have lots of vinyl and cd’s to rummage through.   

We stock a small selection in the shop of Hi Fi equipment, CD’s, films, as well as, Reggae and Dub vinyl.   Often customers will request something I don’t have and I will do my best to source it for them.  We also do DJ Packs which really help those starting off in a DJ career.

HCC:  Online trade seems to have shut down many businesses like yours. Having both a premises and online business is invaluable.

I hear you have a bit of a legacy in the city of Hereford.  Mind sharing? (Must mention Guy is rather timid with a wicked sense of humour)

GD:  I worked around the city DJing in venues like The Crystal Rooms where I launched a Breakbeat night called ‘Temple of Bass’.  I also DJed the Jailhouse and other venues around the city.

My more memorable events were bringing several well-known DJ’s to Hereford for the first time, such as DJ Fresh, Chase & Status and DJ Netsky . It was a different time then, Hereford was a different beast.

HCC:  Well you can definitely say I am enlightened and will happily send friends over to you looking for good deals on DJ or Sound Engineering equipment.  The concept of upcycling technical equipment is something to be pleased about.

We like what Guy Davies is serving up and the mystery is solved.  Another young entrepreneur has made his mark on the city.

Temple Records,  18, Bastion Mews, Union St, Hereford HR1 2BT Tel: 01432 360799  Hours Monday-Saturday 11-5pm, Closed Sundays

Article by Michelle Cuadra, Creative Director at Hereford City Centric Retail and Culture Community and Shecentric blog

 

 

The Mystery Behind the Can

It was cold, well no, freezing and all I could think of was walking home in a complete state of tunnel vision, when I came across some pretty cool street art in the least likely of locations…Hereford. Graffiti is no stranger to England with its own renowned satirical graffiti artist born out of the Bristol underground scene…Bansky. Except here, in cattle and cider country, there is little of such a thing.

one eyed gangsta, hereford street art, england street art
One Eyed Gangsta visits Hereford, England

Taking in these guerilla-warfare style works of art, I noticed the surrounding surface was covered in the usual half-arsed tags that usually resemble each other in some way or another, and don’t really add any character to the city. I recognized the “One-Eyed Gangsta” and the Breaking Bad “Heisenberg” and now am a bit obsessed with devoting an entire category to Hereford Street Art on this blog, hoping that someday Hereford Council will commission a bit of street art around the city to spread a positive message about our youth, culture and community.

Hereford is currently only known for its cattle, produce, ale, cider and the Mappa Mundi, which isn’t a bad thing, but the younger generation feels neglected.  They all move away in search of bigger dreams and inspiration or are stuck at home behind a smartphone or Fallout 4 until the circulation is cut off from their legs.

Breaking Bad, Hereford England, Heisenberg, street art
Breaking Bad Heisenberg. Who Dunnit?

Perhaps we should work a little harder to engage them and allow them some creative scope and importance around the city. They create the trends and the followers come later. It is how it works, we have all been there. After all, we have the notable Hereford College of Arts full of budding artists who often go unappreciated.  In the meantime, the mystery remains behind the can.